Springfield

The "Ask a Mechanic" Thread

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I ran into the same problem. There is only one place in the area, so I was told, and it was up near Baltimore somewhere. Sorry I wish I could remember the name. Being the only guy around they had a ton of jobs in. I had to pay a rush fee to avoid driving on a space saver for a month.

No way. A RUSH FEE?!? I would have gone ape**** :ols:

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How much should a radiator flush cost?

Also, are there any national mechanic sites that rate reputable mechanics? You know, like rate your doctor, but rate your mechanic? I'm trying to find an honest mechanic in Colorado Springs because the people at the Ford Dealership here are ****ing bull**** monkey ass ****es.

In this area it's somewhere around $150. We are fairly expensive compared to the rest of the country though.

Okay ran my car about 40 miles or so while out yesterday, I think the brakes are fine now. I think maybe i was treating them with such a delicate touch before because I wanted the last bit to last longer or something LOL

Good news. Excellent to hear.

Will your mechanics replace a clutch on a 99 cougar for less than $700?

Thanks

Without looking it up and knowing if it is a 4 cylinder or a V-6, it's hard to say. That seems like a fair price.

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So, the verdict with my car in regards to the overheating issue is that the motor for the cooling fan or something like that is no longer working which is causing the car to overheat. So they are replacing that. Also, the thermostat was damaged in the incident, so they are replacing that as well.

No verdict on the engine cutting out issue, as I figured. I have written these suggestions down by you guys and continue to keep my anal retentive log and car work file. If it happens again, I will ask the mechanics if they've tried what you guys have suggested and hope for the best. Oh, and I'll be back in this thread whining about car issue again. :D

Thanks for your help everyone!

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Well, they are charging me $830 at the Ford dealership. I pretty much want to shoot myself right now. How much should this actually cost? (Yeah, I know I'm getting screwed...luckily, my dad is footing the bill because he wants me to go to the dealership to get it done because he thinks that's the best for the moment since I don't know anyone...).

Edited by Special K

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Well, they are charging me $830 at the Ford dealership. I pretty much want to shoot myself right now. How much should this actually cost? (Yeah, I know I'm getting screwed...luckily, my dad is footing the bill because he wants me to go to the dealership to get it done because he thinks that's the best for the moment since I don't know anyone...).

Go check out repairpal.com That should help you out. $830 sounds on the high side tho.....

Edit: I just re-read what you posted and if they are just replacing the motor on the fan along with the thermostat for $830 then that is just Insane!...For $830 you could get that job done twice to your mustang..

Edited by JustAfan47

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Is is possible to replace a broken aftermarket car alarm FOB without going to an installer? Meaning, once I get a replacement FOB could can I pair it with the system without special tools? its crimestopper btw

Edited by Buford T. Justice

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Bump.

Driving home today, VW GTI VR6 1999 123k miles, my car started pulsing at speed on the beltway.

I start to get on the off ramp and then a ECF light comes on and then the battery light. Car acts as if it stalled but I was in neutral. Power steering doesn't work, brakes don't.

Re-start car and check engine light comes on. Car "stalls" again with ECF light 2 more times on ride home.

Any ideas? I cannot find anything on ECF lights.

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Bump.

Driving home today, VW GTI VR6 1999 123k miles, my car started pulsing at speed on the beltway.

I start to get on the off ramp and then a ECF light comes on and then the battery light. Car acts as if it stalled but I was in neutral. Power steering doesn't work, brakes don't.

Re-start car and check engine light comes on. Car "stalls" again with ECF light 2 more times on ride home.

Any ideas? I cannot find anything on ECF lights.

Was the car bucking when it first started to act up, like it was misfiring? Also, I assume you mean check engine light when you say ECF light?

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Was the car bucking when it first started to act up, like it was misfiring? Also, I assume you mean check engine light when you say ECF light?

Yes it was bucking, I didn't hear any sounds that sounded like misfiring. I don't know what the ECF light means. I tried looking it up and couldn't find something. It is a different light then check engine which came up afterwards.

Edited by hockeysc23

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SS, (or anyone else that can help)

I hit a Toyota Yaris (that was parked illegally, BTW) when I was backing out of a parking spot in my apartment complex. I was moving under 5 mph, and barely touched it, but the bumper on the Yaris had moved out of place a little. So, I left a note on the car, and went to work. I talked to the owner, a very nice guy, who said he would take it to the dealership to get it "put back in place" and give me the receipt. No problem I figured. A $100 mistake. Well, the dealership claimed the whole bumper was now broken and wanted to charge $550+ to get the whole bumper replaced.

I'm assuming the dealership is trying to rip off the guy I hit knowing someone else would be paying for it. Luckily, the guy I hit was very nice, and said he is willing to let me figure out a different way to fix the problem. So, I guess my question is, is the dealership trying to rip me off? Does their claim of the "whole bumper being broken" hold any merit?

If anyone knows a good mechanic/body shop in the Bethesda/Rockville area that would take care of this on the cheap I would appreciate the input. The guy I hit doesn't seem overly concerned about his car, and just wants the bumper put back in place. Thanks in advance for any advice.

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^^ Dude, it probably wasn't repairable. And it doesn't take much to screw a bumper up. I'm assuming you're talking about a plastic one. The nice guy needs to man up and make you pay for a new bumper.

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The new style bumpers have clips (moulded into the bumper) that slot into lugs (on the vehicle) and if you break a clip, you basically have to junk the bumper, unless you are prepared to 'red-neck' fix it by screwing the bumper on, and thus screwing into the body. Also, it's not a good look.

What may look like a $100 fix can quite conceivably end up being a $550 replacement.

Whether he was parked illegally or not, you backed into him, so you have to fix it.

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Yes it was bucking, I didn't hear any sounds that sounded like misfiring. I don't know what the ECF light means. I tried looking it up and couldn't find something. It is a different light then check engine which came up afterwards.

Was it the EPC (engine power control) light? I somehow missed your response to my question in this thread, don't know if you've gotten the car looked at yet or not. It sounds like it could be an ignition coil problem from the limited details you've given but it's hard to say without being able to pull the faults and see in person what the car's doing. Drop me a PM and I'll see what I can do to help you get it fixed.

Edited by DCsportsfan53

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Go check out repairpal.com That should help you out. $830 sounds on the high side tho.....

Edit: I just re-read what you posted and if they are just replacing the motor on the fan along with the thermostat for $830 then that is just Insane!...For $830 you could get that job done twice to your mustang..

Thanks so much for your advice in this thread. I really appreciate it. I am going to check out repairpal.com.

And yes, my husband flipped out when I told him the price. I'm just really frustrated because this is one area of my life where I am seriously at the mercy of others because I don't know jack about cars. I get the feeling that I'm getting screwed, but then I don't know for sure, don't know mechanics in our new town, don't know anything. My dad lives halfway across the country so he's not able to help much, and I really feel like a totally dumb blonde being taken advantage of, and I'm majorly frustrated.

And of course my car is stalling more and more.

After it has been sitting overnight or for several hours, it starts fine. And I usually make it to my destination. But if it's only been sitting for 20 min.-1 hour or so, most of the time it takes about 5 minutes for the cranking to turn over (about 6-10 tries). Then it will stall out when I stop at a stop light and take a few minutes to turn back on, then onto the next stoplight and stall out. :ols: I'm so frustrated I can only laugh anymore about this.

It worked fine when I came back from Africa (where my husband had only used it to drive a couple miles to practice maybe once every week or two) , for a good 2 and a half weeks, no stalling or anything. Now it's almost a daily basis.

Anyway, going to look for a mechanic here in Co. Springs because the Ford dealership, well, I pretty much feel like going postal on them at this point for not taking my claims seriously about this bullcrap and for charging me up the butt.

By the way, when this happened in November, they said it was the fuel pump and replaced it, for a ridiculous fee, but it started acting up again about 3 -4 weeks later whereupon I took it back in and they pretty much told me they couldn't find anything wrong at all (...and gave off the impression that it was all in my head or I couldn't drive the car right or something). I left for 3 months so since the car was getting no use, there weren't problems. Now that I've been back about 5 weeks, the problem is returning.

So, after this long-winded rant, one of my questions is, do you think I should stay with the dealership since they've been following this problem (albeit not doing jack crap to help), or should I just try someone totally new?

EDIT: Nevermind. I found an auto shop on repairpal.com that has good reviews. Read through the problems that people making reviews had come in for and it sounds like they are good at pinpointing problems, which this is going to need. None of this hooking it up to a computer bull**** and "oh, the computer doesn't detect anything, so it's fine, here'r your keys miss." I know I've just gotten totally hosed enough already, so new shop it will be.

Edited by Special K

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^^

So you're the only one that drives the car that has a problem? :)

But seriously, though, I hope someone is able to detect what the problem is. Like you, I know very little about cars, so I always feel like im getting hosed everytime I go to a dealership. Maybe you could start leasing a new car every few years? That way, the chances of something going wrong with it are pretty slim.

Edited by Bubble Screen

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^^

So you're the only one that drives the car that has a problem? :)

But seriously, though, I hope someone is able to detect what the problem is. Like you, I know very little about cars, so I always feel like im getting hosed everytime I go to a dealership. Maybe you could start leasing a new car every few years? That way, the chances of something going wrong with it are pretty slim.

Eat crap dude. :ols:

For the record, it did this on my husband too.

And, in a cool update today, I was driving home from work and my car died at a stoplight, and I couldn't get it started, so I called a tow truck. I completely backed up a main thoroughfare (or however the hell that's spelled, I don't give a crap anymore), had police blocking off the middle of the road for me, caused a huge backup, turned on the radio, and they were talking about my car in the rush hour traffic report :ols:

I wanted to cry, but I could only laugh b/c it was so ridiculous. It is now at a different mechanic shop (who has gotten good reviews online and even the tow truck driver said it was a good place after I told him where he was taking it to even though he wasn't supposed to tell me) who isn't going to charge me anything if he can't figure out what the problem is. He did seemed concerned that I was charged so much for other things and said he would take a look at my invoices and if something was insane, which I'm sure it was, he's going to call them and see what's going on.

And if he is able to figure out what it is (he was thinking even the altitude might be messing things up and he needs to manually readjust whatever so it works at this altitude up here) and it wasn't the damn fuel pump after all, which was replaced yet I STILL had the same problems again, well, I'm booking an appearance on Judge Judy.

Rant off.

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Maybe you could start leasing a new car every few years? That way, the chances of something going wrong with it are pretty slim.

Of course, nothing EVER goes wrong with a leased vehicle. :rolleyes:

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Of course, nothing EVER goes wrong with a leased vehicle. :rolleyes:

I leased a couple of cars several years ago. Each one for two years. Never had a single problem with either. By "lease", I meant like a two year lease, if they still have those. Unless you're hard on the car you're not likely to run into any problems in that short time. Furthermore, if you get Honda or something like that, you're even less likely to encounter a problem. It was just a suggestion. And it beats having a beater and having to constantly repair stuff on it all the time.

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I leased a couple of cars several years ago. Each one for two years. Never had a single problem with either. By "lease", I meant like a two year lease, if they still have those. Unless you're hard on the car you're not likely to run into any problems in that short time. Furthermore, if you get Honda or something like that, you're even less likely to encounter a problem. It was just a suggestion. And it beats having a beater and having to constantly repair stuff on it all the time.

No problem, thanks for the suggestion. I'll see what this new mechanic has to say, hopefully he'll have some new insight. I'd hate to have to get rid of the car. It's a nice car, under 100,000 miles, and has always been taken care of very well, mechanics always say that...there's just something wrong with it since I've brought it to Colorado and I hope they can pinpoint the problem because I love the car.

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Thanks so much for your advice in this thread. I really appreciate it. I am going to check out repairpal.com

EDIT: Nevermind. I found an auto shop on repairpal.com that has good reviews. Read through the problems that people making reviews had come in for and it sounds like they are good at pinpointing problems, which this is going to need. None of this hooking it up to a computer bull**** and "oh, the computer doesn't detect anything, so it's fine, here'r your keys miss." I know I've just gotten totally hosed enough already, so new shop it will be.

Thanks for the update. I will always help a fellow die hard skins fan.... :D

Something you should at least look into is an extended warranty company like StopRepairBills.com. There a lot of these companys out there now a days i dunno witch one is better so just check it out and do some research and see if it's something that might peek your intrust. Good Luck!

Hail :logo:

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Thanks for the update. I will always help a fellow die hard skins fan.... :D

Something you should at least look into is an extended warranty company like StopRepairBills.com. There a lot of these companys out there now a days i dunno witch one is better so just check it out and do some research and see if it's something that might peek your intrust. Good Luck!

Hail :logo:

Thanks a bunch, I will check it out once I get done with finals.

In an update, the new mechanic is pretty sure he found the problem today. He just ran the car until it died on him and there is something wrong with the distributor.

He heard some squeaking noise when it was running, which I've heard and FREAKING TOLD the dealership about, yet they said it was nothing and DID nothing. Right before the the engine conked out he listened to the distributor and said it was definitely coming from that. When the engine died, he shined the flashlight in and noticed metal shavings, which obviously aren't supposed to be there.

He's taking it out in the morning and will take a look at it and likely replace it with a new one. But apparently the spark plugs go through the distributor or are involved and are somehow getting screwed up, making the engine cut out at random times, like rush hour.

Anyway, I am hoping this is it b/c I just want it to stop crapping out on me. I'm also going to talk to him about the previous work that was done on my car, not last week which was a different problem, but in November when they "fixed" the problem by installing a completely overpriced new fuel pump (which the new mechanic said probably shouldn't have needed replacement as it did not have a ton of miles on it). Anyway, we'll see.

That's the update on this cluster**** of a car saga. Hopefull this will be it and I won't be in this thread ranting and raving anymore. :ols:

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My car stereo began to power off intermittently about a year ago and nowadays only comes back on after a heavy rain, then cuts back off when conditions become dry again. Weird.

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My car stereo began to power off intermittently about a year ago and nowadays only comes back on after a heavy rain, then cuts back off when conditions become dry again. Weird.

Bad connection somewhere,the moisture in the air is helping conductivity.

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